HackelBury Fine Art is pleased to announce an exhibition of the award-winning Ex-Voto by British artist Alys Tomlinson, 7 March 2019 – 18 April 2019. This marks the gallery debut of Alys’s major body of work.
In Ex-Voto Alys Tomlinson explores Christian pilgrimage sites in Lourdes in France, Ballyvourney in Ireland and Grabarka in Poland. Shot on a large format 5×4 film camera, the works evoke a stillness and reflect the mysterious, timeless quality present at these sites of great contemplation.
The works in Ex-Voto encompass formal portraiture, large format landscape and small, detailed still-lifes of objects and markers left behind by the pilgrims. The pilgrims featured in the portraits look calmly and peacefully into the camera, yet simultaneously their direct gaze exudes a powerful strength. Alys’s landscape photographs also carry a feeling of quiet intensity and provide a sense of physical place for what is often considered a spiritual journey. The ex-voto still-lifes join the portraits and the landscapes together. Often placed anonymously and hidden from view, ex-voto are left by pilgrims as expressions of hope and gratitude, creating a tangible narrative between faith, person and the landscape.
This exhibition coincides with the release of “Ex-Voto”, published by GOST Books with essays by Guardian writer Sean O’Hagan, Professor John Eade, University of Roehampton and Dr Rowan Cerys Tomlinson. Works from Ex-Voto will be on view at Side Gallery, Newcastle and with the Royal Photographic Society touring exhibition which opens first in Bristol.